The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) is an internationally recognized high school program that doubles as a preparatory course for university education. Developed in 1968 by the organization International Baccalaureate, its objective has always been to provide a challenging and all-inclusive educational experience that transcends geographical, cultural, and disciplinary boundaries. IB students are trained to be internationally minded learners who utilize their skills and knowledge toward creating a more peaceful, more just world.

Today, IB education encompasses not only the IBDP but also the Middle Years Programme (MYP) and the Primary Years Programme (PYP). Taken together, these programs create a steady continuum of international education that can serve students from the ages of 3 to 19. Each program has been carefully crafted according to the developmental needs of its students in order to nurture global consciousness at all ages.

As the IB is now recognized as one of the most demanding educational curricula in the world, it takes a particular kind of student to make the most of the unique learning opportunities it offers. If you and your child are currently looking into the possibilities of IB education, or perhaps wondering what the best IB schools in Singapore expect from their students, read on. The following characteristics are promising signs that your child may be well-suited for this challenging educational program:

Natural Curiosity

If your child organically seeks to learn more about themselves, the world around them, and other people, they may thrive under an IB Programme. University instructors frequently note that IB students stand out among their peers due to their unique passion for discovery and learning. For many, this love of learning is an attitude that they nurture and sustain well into adulthood, if not for their entire lives.

A naturally curious child will have no trouble learning and honing the investigative and research skills that play a crucial role in many IB Programmes. They’re also likely to be comfortable taking responsibility for their own learning experiences and working independently on assigned tasks, qualities that will enable them to thrive in any academically rigorous environment.

Critical Thinking and Reflection

If your child is the sort to unashamedly ask “why,” they’re likely to fit right in at an IB school. IB students are not simply expected to be passive absorbers of the knowledge and information their instructors impart. They’re encouraged to participate actively in discussion and debate with others, to ask meaningful questions, and to embrace opportunities to learn about complex issues. When it comes to problem-solving, IB training helps them develop highly creative solutions and make well-reasoned, ethically sound choices.


International education exposes students to cultures, histories, and ways of life from all over the world, many of which will initially be unfamiliar. It’s thus a good sign if your child is already accustomed to life in a multicultural environment, and even more so if they show an active interest in the values, traditions, and perspectives of other individuals and communities. This attitude shows that they’re aware of the larger world outside their personal bubble and are open to experiencing that world in full.

Many IB students apply their appreciation of diverse cultural attitudes and viewpoints not only to academic study but also to the community activities they choose to involve themselves in. A majority find fulfillment in contributing to local volunteer initiatives, and many eventually go on to explore larger-scale humanitarian work. If your child shows a passion for this kind of service early in life, you can rest assured it will be well-nurtured at an IB school.

Well-Developed Communication Skills

Does your child show an aptitude for spoken or written communication? Are they able to speak or are learning to speak more than one language? Do they enjoy opportunities to work with and learn from others? If you can confidently answer “yes” to any of the aforementioned questions, you’re in luck, as developing students’ communication abilities is one of the major objectives of any IB curriculum.

IB students receive extensive training in writing, public speaking, presentation, and other similar skills, sometimes in multiple languages. They’re regularly praised by both peers and instructors for the clarity, coherence, and energy with which they express themselves. They’re also frequently willing and highly productive team players, and they tend to produce excellent results working in groups.

Willingness to Take Risks

One of the most important selling points of IB education is that it prepares students for university education, work, and life outside their home country. In the process, it constantly presents students with unfamiliar and uncertain situations, subjects, and learning materials. The best IB students rise to these challenges with courage and conviction, and they are buoyant enough to weather even the greatest difficulties confidently.

A can-do attitude and an eagerness to leave their comfort zone are promising signs for your child’s future in an IB Programme. More importantly, these characteristics help lay a strong foundation for the development of important attitudes that will serve them well in adulthood, such as adaptability, mental resilience, and healthy self-esteem.

An IB education isn’t for everyone, but if your child has the right attitude, an IB class could be a learning environment they could thrive in. It’s never too late or early to explore the ways your child could benefit from IB education, so don’t hesitate to discuss the idea with them. Should they choose to take the plunge and embrace the many challenges that come their way at their new school, they’ll receive an education that’s truly world-class.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 2nd March 2022